Sourdough Simplicity

An all-time favorite.
Time-consuming prep for the real deal.
Versus quick and simple variations.
The Menu Shoppe has it covered…
great “finds” for great entertaining.
Enjoy these varieties…
Sourdough Rye
1 cup rye flour
1/2 cup bread flour
2/3 cup water ( for the starter )
1/4 cup water ( for the dough )
1/2 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon white sugar
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon caraway seed
1 cup rye flour
1 cup bread flour
1 cup sourdough starter
1 teaspoon salt (optional)
The night before you want to bake the bread, feed the starter with 1 cup rye flour, 1/2 cup bread flour, and 2/3 cup water. Cover, and let stand at room temperature overnight. In a large bowl, mix together expanded starter, 1/4 cup water, salt, sugar, oil, seeds, and 1 cup each rye and bread flour. Add more or less flour as necessary to get a soft dough. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead until satiny. Place in a well oiled bowl, and turn once to oil the surface. Cover with a damp cloth. Allow to rise in a warm spot until doubled. Punch down dough, and shape into loaves. Place on a greased baking sheet. Allow to rise until doubled in bulk. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 40 minutes, or until it sounds hollow when thumped on the bottom. Alternate baking method for chewier, salty crust: Bake 20 minutes at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). In a small bowl, mix together 1/2 cup water and 1 teaspoon salt. Remove loaves from oven and brush crust with salt water. Continue baking for 25 minutes more, brushing at 10 minute intervals.
Sourbread Scones
2 1/2 cups bread flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon apple pie spice
1/3 cup cold butter
1 1/4 cups sourdough starter
2 tablespoons milk (optional)
Coarse sugar, for dusting (optional)
Preheat an oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Whisk together the flour, salt, cream of tartar, baking soda, sugar, and apple pie spice in a mixing bowl. Cut in the butter with a knife or pastry blender until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add the sourdough starter and mix by hand to form a soft dough. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and divide it into 4 pieces. Pat or roll one piece of dough into a 1/2-inch thick round. Cut it into 4 wedge-shaped pieces and place the scones on the prepared baking sheet about 1 inch apart. Repeat with remaining pieces of dough. Brush the tops of the scones with milk and sprinkle with coarse sugar, if desired.  Bake until the scones just start to turn golden, 12 to 15 minutes.
…and this great rendition…
Sourdough Toasts with Smoky Tomato Confit
1 small onion, finely chopped
6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 (28- to 32-oz) can whole tomatoes in juice, drained, seeded, and finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon sweet Spanish smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 (20-inch) sourdough baguette, cut diagonally into 1/2-inch-thick slices
Cook onion in 3 tablespoons oil in a 10-inch heavy skillet over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, 4 minutes. Reduce heat to low and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until onion is golden and soft, 8 to 10 minutes more. Add tomatoes, paprika, sugar, and salt and cook, uncovered, over moderately low heat, stirring frequently, until mixture is very thick (jamlike), 25 to 30 minutes. Purée in a blender or food processor, then transfer to a bowl to cool. Preheat oven to 350°F. Brush both sides of bread slices with remaining 3 tablespoons oil, then arrange in 1 layer on a baking sheet and bake, turning once, until lightly toasted, about 15 minutes total. Serve toasts with confit.
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